The weekend debate: Does the Prime Minister’s pay make a useful yardstick?

Here’s your starter for ten in our weekend slot where we throw up an idea or thought for debate…

The level of the Prime Minister’s pay has become a widely used yardstick for other public sector pay – which suggestions of extra scrutiny for the pay deals of people who are paid more than the PM and counts or complaints about how many people are paid more.

But does the Prime Minister’s pay (or rather salary and pension, for the benefits in kind such as accommodation are rarely factored in) make for a sensible yardstick? And if not, is there an alternative that should be used?

Read more by or more about or .
This entry was posted in Op-eds.
Bookmark the web address for this page or use the short url http://ldv.org.uk/23564 for Twitter and emails.

7 Comments

  • It is not just the benefits in kind that people don’t factor in they also tend to ignore the fact the PM also gets a 65K MP salary, generous expenses and the opportunity to make a mint when their employers sack them.

    But the reason why it is silly to use the PM’s salary as a yardstick is because it is a job that requires no qualifications or experience. The PM’s job is a very special case and therefore not the one by which others should be judged.

  • “The last great government was the 1945 – 1950 government which created the NHS and transformed the lives of millions for the better.”

    As this is a discussion thread I’ll lob in these little hand grenades :-)

    Objectively you could compare the 97-01 Government in terms of its constitutional changes (Scottish/Welsh devolution, Human Rights Act etc). Arguably the 45 Government would have introduced a welfare state & NHS in some form whoever had been elected.

    The 79-87 government was a government of very radical change – it’s a matter of political perspective whether it was a great government (on balance not IMO) but the changes it made were driven through by the Prime Minister so looked at from the point of view of “did she deliver on her political agenda” you have to give Thatcher plaudits for having done so.

    (There praising Blair AND Thatcher in one go – that should ensure I lose the maximum amount of votes!)

  • David Le Grice 26th Mar '11 - 8:35pm

    If it is to be used as a yardstick then It should apply to private sector public service providers (Serco et al.) who can already out compete the public sector for the best talent with high salaries.

  • To use PM’s pay as a yardstick displays amazing ignorance. The PM is a politician who, together with colleagues prescibes policy usually via parliament. Civil servants and chief execs of Councils implement those policies by managing staff and resources. They are managers. Managers are trained professionals – there are University qualifications for managers. The comparison is like that between apples and oranges.
    I was disappointed to see the comparison in the last Lib Dem manifesto but that document is now irrelevant anyway!

Post a Comment

Lib Dem Voice welcomes comments from everyone but we ask you to be polite, to be on topic and to be who you say you are. You can read our comments policy in full here. Please respect it and all readers of the site.

If you are a member of the party, you can have the Lib Dem Logo appear next to your comments to show this. You must be registered for our forum and can then login on this public site with the same username and password.

Your email is never published. Required fields are marked *

*
*
Please complete the name of this site, Liberal Democrat ...?




Recent Comments

  • User AvatarStevan Rose 24th Oct - 7:29pm
    I could become less outraged if, for example, I happen to be invited to kit myself out with a lovely velvet robe and access to...
  • User Avatarg 24th Oct - 7:00pm
    T-J, I think you rate the SNP's chances too highly. Voters have always, always undervoted for the SNP in Westminster compared to Holyrood/polling, presumably because...
  • User AvatarHelen Tedcastle 24th Oct - 6:57pm
    Matthew Green ' I resent the implication that I swallowed a Thatcher and Tebbit narrative uncritically. The reason why those two got as far as...
  • User AvatarRichard Dean 24th Oct - 6:45pm
    While this may be an improvement, it's only one because the present system is so awful. First off, an 18-week wait time seems unaccountably excessive....
  • User AvatarGF 24th Oct - 6:39pm
    What David Allen said. Tragically, there is much truth in what Matthew says; too many are content only to contemplate their collective navel and stay...
  • User AvatarJohnTilley 24th Oct - 6:33pm
    Matthew Huntbach 24th Oct '14 - 4:18pm Matthew, I do not for a moment accept your bracketing of YES voters in the Scotland Referendum with...